Unemployment rate, Labour Force Survey (N)


Unemployment rate according to the Labour Force Survey, calculated as a per cent of persons in the labour force.

Unemployed persons are defined as those who have applied for work during the previous four weeks, and are available for work within two weeks following the survey interview.

Full Title

Unemployment rate, Labour Force Survey (N)

Identification Number



Name Affiliation Abbreviation Role
Statistics Norway SSB

Date of Production


Contact Person

Name Affiliation E-mail address Universal Resource Identifier
Cassie Trewin

Date of Distribution



ENG tittel oppdatert okt-14.

Date: 2016-08-19

Type: Endelig


From 2006, the lower age limit for participation in the survey was lowered from 16 to 15 years. Recording of age was also changed from 31 December to the time of the reference week. Other small changes have been done in accordance with corresponding surveys in EU countries. The changes in definition of age have had little effect on calculated unemployment rate (maximum 0,4% difference in 2006).

Unemployment figures from the Labour Force Survey differ from figures on unemployed persons registered at the Employment Offices. The Labour Force Survey includes some unemployed persons who are not registered at the Employment Offices, participants in government measures to promote employment and some disabled persons. Some people registered at the Employment office will not be classified as unemployed in the Labour Force Survey, based on information given on their job seeking and availability for work. From 2006, the Labour Force Survey no longer classifies persons who are laid-off as unemployed, but rather as employed persons temporarily absent from work. The Employment Offices still classify lay-offs as unemployed in their registerbased statistics.


Geographical level



Both genders, men, women

Age groups

All ages (15-64 years), 15-24, 25-44, 45-74 years

Time periods


Frequency of updates



Data is collected from Statistics Norway's Labour Force Survey. Inhabitants in all municipalities are randomly selected on the basis of a register of family units. The sample consists of about 24 000 persons (12 000 family units) per quarter. Each family member aged 15-74 years participates in the survey, answering questions about their situation during a specified reference week. Each family completes the survey 8 times over a period of 8 quarters. Interviews are conducted by telephone. Demographic data is collected from the Central Population Register. Data is collected weekly so that all weeks are sampled during the year. Nationally representative data.


Inntekt, brutto, bruttoinntekt

Data quality

The data quality is good. Participation in the survey is compulsory, so the response rate is very high at around 90 per cent. As for all surveys, some errors may occur during data collection and processing. The use of proxy interviews (asking near family members instead of the observation unit) often increases errors of measurement and tends to underestimate employment. Most affected is persons under 30 years of age. Data from the Labour Force Survey is comparable over time. International definitions are used to ensure comparability with other countries also.

Related Materials

Employment, disability pension and health - fact sheet (in Norwegian only)

Unemployment and health - fact sheet (in Norwegian only)

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